Posted on December 13, 2021
Christmas dinner is a wonderful time to gather with family and friends and to reflect on the joy and gratitude of the giving season. You can use this time to share the Gospel story of Jesus Christ and to guide the hearts of those gathered toward the real reason for the season. If you are hosting the Christmas dinner, you have been given an incredible opportunity to celebrate the birth of Jesus and to tell your family and friends about the gift of eternal salvation. As you pause to give thanks, use one of these beautiful Christmas dinner prayers before sharing a delicious meal together.
Posted on December 10, 2021
“For the Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost.” — Luke 19:10
The Advent season anticipates the coming of Christ. Jesus came for thelost. This year has been a challenge for many around the globe, but the one change we can all make to bring the wonder back to the entire Christmas season isn’t in the shopping, the cooking, or the merrymaking, but rather something in the way Jesus came to earth and lived—something we so easily forget how to do each day. In this Christmas meditation, remember whose Jesus is, who you are, and marvel at the miracle of God’s plan in action for your eternal joy.
We seek and search for confidence in this world. Society clamors self-care and self-help. Slogans abound to love ourselves and be ourselves. Love has nothing to do with self. Love is self-less. Love crashed into this atmosphere and gave up every comfort readily available for other people. For His people. Confidence is rooted in Christ Jesus, in His sacrifice and in who He is, and Whose we are. The one change we can make this Christmas to bring back wonder is selflessness. Not only in charitable donations and lending a helping hand in our communities and around the world, but in knowing who we are. Do we know who we are? We are not random beings on a discovery mission to find out who we are. We are intentional, created in the very image of God. And everything we need to know about ourselves flies off the pages of Scripture, and the notes of nature.
Photo Credit: © Getty Images/lovleah
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Posted on December 6, 2021
The Advent season celebrates the coming of Jesus Christ, the long-awaited Messiah. With God in the beginning, the Son of God was born on earth amidst humble circumstances, in order to serve and save mankind. The Advent wreath is a symbol of the season, with a candle lit each of the four Sundays leading up to, and on Christmas Day. The light of the flickering candle flames reminds us who Jesus is: “In him was life, and that life was the light of all mankind. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.” (John 1:4-5).
Why You Should Celebrate Advent (even if your church is virtual)
The Advent wreath is traditionally lit during a church service but can be equally as impactful virtually. Minimal supplies are needed to make an Advent wreath at home, and no wreath is necessary to recognize the light and peace Christ brought to earth! We celebrate Advent, not only in anticipation of the first Christmas but of each new life in Christ. He presently comes to us, and He will come again!
This year, as we reconcile the reliability of human traditions and plans, the church of God is still moving, helping, and loving others around the world in the name of Christ Jesus. Celebrating Christ’s coming is important. Preparing our hearts renews our hope and reminds us of our mission.
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Posted on June 30, 2021
“He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High will abide in the shadow of the Almighty.” – Psalm 91:1
God is sovereign and omnipotent, meaning He is all-knowing and everywhere simultaneously. These are comforting truths in a world full of pain, calamity and injustice. “Like a bird protecting its young,” the VOICE paraphrase of verse 4 reads, “God will cover you with His feathers, will protect you under His great wings; His faithfulness will form a shield around you, a rock-solid wall to protect you.” When we turn to God, we find the peaceful and powerful arm of His protection. The NIV Study Bible Notes proclaim Psalm 91 as “a glowing testimony to the security of those who trust in God.”
Prayer is powerful, and our Father in heaven hears, and answers, us. The words of Psalm 91 guide us in prayer for God’s protection and refuge from all of the things life throws at us.
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Posted on June 14, 2021
“And he passed in front of Moses, proclaiming, ‘The LORD, the LORD, the compassionate and gracious God, slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness, maintaining love to thousands, and forgiving wickedness, rebellion and sin. Yet he does not leave the guilty unpunished; he punishes the children and their children for the sin of the parents to the third and fourth generation.’” Exodus 34:6-7 ESV
Generational curses are behaviors we adopt because of the environment we are brought up in. Addictions and abuses can influence our behavior, but ultimately, we all have the choice to shake off those chains and embrace freedom in Christ. “The sins of the fathers are punished in the children through becoming the children’s own sin,” John Piper explains, “the hatred of God is the embodiment of what the father’s problem was.” Consequences for repeated sins are definitely generational. God proclaimed to Moses in the verses above He would not leave the guilty unpunished. Why would He want His children to continue on in deplorable habits that would bring them no true happiness or satisfaction? God so loved the world, He sent His only Son to save us. (John 3:16) He is slow to anger, always good, and He provided a way for us to break the curse of sin we are all born under.
Paul wrote, “because through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit who gives life has set you free from the law of sin and death.” (Romans 8:2)